March 2018
12:39 PM IST
News Headlines
Home   | Main News   | Kerala  | National   | International  | Business   | Sports   | Entertainment   | Columns   | Offbeat   | About Deepika 
International News
Afghan officials and Taliban talk despite wave of violence
Kabul, Feb 13 (AP) Afghan officials are carrying out at least two tracks of talks with the Taliban even after a month of brutal bombings and attacks by the militants that killed nearly 200 and despite President Donald Trump's angry rejection of any negotiations for now.

The persistence of the back-channel contacts reflects the desire to keep a door open for reconciliation even as the Afghan government and its top ally, the United States, fumble for a strategy to end the protracted war, now entering its 17th year.

Rifts within the Afghan government have grown vast, even as the Taliban gain territory and wage increasingly ruthless tactics.

The United States has unleashed heavier air power against the Taliban and other militants. After the string of Taliban attacks in recent weeks, Trump angrily condemned the group.

"We don't want to talk with the Taliban," he said. "There may be a time but it's going to be a long time."

Still, Afghanistan's intelligence chief Masoom Stanikzai and its National Security Chief Mohammed Hanif Atmar continue to each talk separately to the Taliban, say those familiar with the backdoor negotiations.

The problem, however, is that neither is talking to the other or to the High Peace Council, which was created by the government to talk peace with the Taliban, they said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the contacts.

Hakim Mujahid, a member of the High Peace Council, confirmed that Stanikzai still has regular contacts with the Taliban's point man for peace talks, Mullah Abbas Stanikzai. The two are not related.

Mujahid, who was the Taliban's representative to the United Nations during the group's five-year rule of Afghanistan that ended in 2001, said the group would not respond well to Trump's tough talk.

"The language of power, the language of threat will not convince Afghans to surrender," he said.

Andrew Wilder, vice president of the Asia Programme at the US Institute of Peace, said multiple players in Kabul have contacts with the Taliban.

"But this isn't being done in a coordinated manner to achieve clearly defined objectives," he said.

Later this month, representatives from dozens of countries are to meet for a second time in the Afghan capital for the so-called Kabul process aimed at forging a path to peace. The first round was held in June.

Still, the latest spate of violence has limited options for Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, who is also fending off a mini-revolt within his own government, feuding with the vice president as well as a powerful northern governor.

Meanwhile, the former No 2 of the Taliban, Aga Jan Motasim, who still counts the radical religious movement's leader Mullah Habaitullah Akhunzada among his friends, warned that Trump's strategy of using the military to force a more compliant Taliban to the negotiation table could lead to more suicide attacks.

Turkey-backed forces take 'total' control of Afrin
Crushed hopes greet Aung San Suu Kyi in Australia
Mauritius: Ameenah Gurib-Fakim resigns over credit card scandal
Trump fires former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe
Six dead in Florida university footbridge collapse
Trump's daughter-in-law files for divorce from her husband
Thousands flee in first mass exodus from Syria's besieged eastern Ghouta
Famed German director makes film about Pope Francis
British scientist Stephen Hawking dies at his home aged 76
Trump sacks Tillerson; CIA director Mike Pompeo to be new secretary of state
Palestinian PM Hamdallah survives Gaza roadside bomb attack
Shoe thrown at Imran Khan during rally in Pakistan
Official: Insurgents attacked police checkpoint, killing 5
Southwest passengers leap from wing after emergency landing
NASA probe set to uncover mysteries of rare 'relic galaxy'
US Defence Secretary Mattis arrives in Kabul on unannounced visit
Trump blocks Broadcom's USD 117 billion bid to buy Qualcomm
Krishna Kohli takes oath as Senator donning traditional Thari dress
Slovak interior minister quits after journalist murder
Five dead in New York river helicopter crash
Watch Video: Fun filled trailer of 'Kuttanadan Marpappa' is here !
 (Mar 17, 2018, DG): The trailer of Kunchacko Boban starrer 'Kuttanadan Marppaappa' has been r  
Irrfan Khan diagnosed with tumour
There should be space for dissent, disagreement: Nandita Das
Amitabh Bachchan says he is fine
BJP leaders meet Mani at home
 (Kottayam, Mar 17, 2018, DG): BJP leaders visited Kerala Congress veteran KM Mani's house on
Lorries crash into each other at Kuravilangad, 2 killed
Nisha's controversial book: Jose.K.Mani responds to media
Three stars may be opened, Sudheeran warns govt
Sonia targets Modi, accuses him of making hollow promises
 (New Delhi, Mar 17, 2018): Former Congress president Sonia Gandhi today launched an all-out a
Rape attempt on university student
Congress urges EC to revert to paper ballots
Gorakhpur DM among 37 IAS officers shuffled in UP
Untitled Page
Rashtra Deepika LTD
Copyright @ 2017 , Rashtra Deepika Ltd.